What are your thoughts on the budget that just got passed?
This was asked a year ago, and as per usual, we’ve put off the hard questions to the end. The budget that got passed was awful. It’s increased the deficit while becoming way less progressive, meaning there’s LESS investment in our future. We’re neither spending more on nor saving more for the future.
That said, it could have been a ton worse. The phone calls that we all made last year really did make a difference. The marginal tax rate structure ended up not being as terrible as it could have been. There were lots of horrible things that didn’t end up in the budget. Even small things like not giving a tax advantage to teachers for buying supplies got saved from chopping. Other investment things did get axed (like moving expenses), but it could have been worse.
As for us, we haven’t done our taxes yet, but I think we will have benefited given our income and the changes in marginal tax rates combined with the biggest cuts not really affecting us given where we live and our lack of mortgage interest situation. This is our first year in which it truly makes no sense to itemize (last year we were like $200 of giving over the part where itemizing makes sense), and the new tax bill’s treatment of state/property taxes means that there’s not even any point to adding up our donations. So that should save time.
I would gladly pay that money back if it meant that everyone in our situation and better situations had to pay and we could invest in our country’s future again.
Grumpeteers, what are your thoughts on the latest federal tax situation?